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Heron-Centric: Ruminations of a Language Designer
What I want to store in my code comments
by Christopher Diggins
May 28, 2008
The old school approach to comments was to toss them out during the tokenization phase of compiling. Modern IDEs are making comments increasingly relevant to the software development process. So what happens if we push the idea even further?


I have been talking with some developers about what they want in their next generation IDEs (no I'm not working on something like that, and if I told you about it I'd have to erase your brain). The list is pretty straightforward:

What is interesting is that everything necessary for implementing these features can be placed within comments, if an IDE is intelligent about showing/hiding/managing the relevant information. I'd be interested in hearing what features you'd like that could be easily implemented by inserting metadata within comments?

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About the Blogger

Christopher Diggins is a software developer and freelance writer. Christopher loves programming, but is eternally frustrated by the shortcomings of modern programming languages. As would any reasonable person in his shoes, he decided to quit his day job to write his own ( ). Christopher is the co-author of the C++ Cookbook from O'Reilly. Christopher can be reached through his home page at

This weblog entry is Copyright © 2008 Christopher Diggins. All rights reserved.

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